Monday, February 11, 2019

Welcome to the White House, Larry Kudlow

Larry Kudlow and Trump
From Team of Vipers: My 500 Extraordinary Days in the Trump White House, the new book from former special assistant to the president Cliff Sims:

A couple of days later, Larry Kudlow called me back upstairs. When I got to his office suite---he was sharing with Gary Cohn, who had resigned but not yet departed - he look worried.
He had just come from the oval, he explained, and the President was railing against a “special deal” Amazon was getting from the US Postal Service that he wanted Kudlow to somehow stop. This “deal” was one of Trump's perennial hobbyhorses. Someone had told him that Amazon, personified by presidential nemesis Jeff Bezos, the Amazon CEO, was getting some perk from the government that the company didn't deserve. And Trump just couldn't let it go.

As Larry recounted the conversation and Trump's order to “do something” about Amazon, Gary laughed loudly. “Welcome to the White House,” he said, shaking Larry's hand. Larry, for his part, appeared totally confused

“It's total bull--,” Gary told him. A giant smile spread across the face, as if he was silently saying: Thank goodness I don't have to deal with this nonsense anymore. "He's been trying to get me to do something about this for months,” Cohn explained. “Amazon's not getting some special treatment. USPS is mandated to go to every house, every day no matter what. The Amazon contract is paying them extra to take their packages ‘the last mile’ from the distro center to the front door. They'd have to go to these houses anyway.” Shaking his head, he finished. “Amazon may actually be saving the Postal Service, not killing it.”

Then Cohn got  to the real motivation behind this latest Trump obsession. “He's just mad at Bezos for owning The Washington Post."

That explanation didn't help Kudlow out. He’d just been given a direct order from the President of the United States. You better believe that back in the day if Ronald Reagan had told young Kudlow to jump in the lake may he’d be treading water umtil Reagan told him to get out.

“So....” Larry repled hesitantly, “I shouldn't do anything about this?”

I could see that what he was thinking: Is this how it  always works around here?

“Don't worry about it,” Gary told him. “Cliff will have to help you figure it out. But now you know why I'm so happy to be leaving.”

Note: I have suspected all along that the packages being delivered by the post office for Amazon were a profit center  for USPS. See my April 2018 comment: 
Does the US Post Office Really Lose $1.46 per Package That It Delivers for Amazon?


1 comment:

  1. Something about this doesn't make sense. Or there is something I'm not following. What is the "special deal" Amazon is supposedly getting? The only special deals I can think of that make any sense is that A) Amazon is getting a sweetheart lower rate, or B) Amazon is getting a special service not available to other companies, like that the mail carrier is making a second trip to a house during the day just to deliver Amazon. Anyone have the scoop?